Holiday gift ideas are always welcome in my world, and I find the tasting rooms along the Wine Road filled with excellent gift ideas. If a 750ml bottle of wine doesn’t fit the bill, no worries, there are many, many options to consider.
Large Format Bottles
Making spirits bright is easier when you can find the perfect gift for everyone on your list. One holiday gift idea that is often overlooked, but is always a welcome gift is a large format bottle. What does that mean? Well wine doesn’t just come in 750ml bottles, it also come in larger sizes, the most common are 1.5L (liter) also called a Magnum, and 3L a.k.a. a Jeroboam or Double Magnum. There are also 6L bottles called Imperial, 9L known as a Salmanazar (the equivalent of a full case of wine), and if you really have a big gathering, consider an 18L referred to as a Solomon or a Melchior, which is the equivalent of two cases of wine! Plus there are even more large format sizes.
Many wineries along the Wine Road have large format bottles available year round, while other just have them during the holidays. On a recent visit to Silver Oak, I saw the room where the large format collection is kept. Very impressive. Silver Oak also has etched bottles, which make excellent gifts and have the distinction of being picked as one of Oprah’s Favorite Things for 2016.
Contact your favorite Wine Road winery if you are interesting in giving a large format wine this holiday season. They are also great for your own gatherings or any special occasion.
Just as wine comes in bigger sizes, it comes in half bottles as well. Again, a few Wine Road wineries produce wines in 375ml bottles, and have them available year round. I like to get a few as stocking stuffers, or share with the folks who drop off wine deliveries or deliver our mail.
Another wine type produced in smaller bottles is dessert wine, sometimes called late harvest or port-like wines, which are usually produced in either a 375ml or 500ml bottles. Dessert wines can be a great hostess gift, or a perfect contribution to a holiday dinner. There is something special about sipping a luscious dessert wine in an adorable little glass by a roaring fire. The Wine Road’s Wineries webpage can guide you to the wineries that produce Late Harvest wines.
Non-Wine Holiday Gift Ideas
If not everyone on your list is into wine, no worries; there are a lot of other gift ideas along the Wine Road. From chocolate to olive oil, pottery to clothing, coasters to artisan cheeses, there are no shortages of gift ideas in the tasting rooms.
Trattore Farms is a winery and has an olive oil mill, producing locally and estate-grown wines and extra virgin olive oils. They offer a wide range of wines, and an almost bigger selection of olive oils available for tasting. Hard to pick a favorite they are all so delicious. Olive oil dipping dishes, and scented and natural olive oil soaps are also available for purchase. Plus the view from the tasting room deck is spectacular.
Wine Club Memberships
Have a favorite wine club you belong to? Love the wines and wish you could share them with a loved one far away? You can! Give a wine club membership as your holiday gift. Often you can work directly with the winery to arrange a club shipment with a personalized note sent to the recipient of your gift in time for the holidays. Subsequent club shipment will arrive throughout the year, so it is the gift that keeps on giving.
And then there is Wine…
One of my favorite holiday gifts is wine—be it a white, red, rosé or sparkling, large or small format, it is always a welcome gift at our house. There are so many special offerings from wineries this time of year, including verticals (the same wine from consecutive years), library wines (older vintages that have been properly cellared by the winery), or wines grouped by varietals or appellation or some other distinction. When I was checking to see who was offering what, I discovered almost every winery along the Wine Road has terrific holiday wine offerings.
Matrix Winery has many special holiday offers, and they put one together just for the Along the Wine Road readers. This 3-bottle set is the staff’s favorite Russian River Valley appellation wines.
It includes one bottle each of:
2014 Chardonnay, Bacigalupi, Russian River Valley
2014 Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley
2014 Zinfandel, Matrix Estate, Russian River Valley
The 3-bottle gift set is $96, excluding tax and shipping. The retail value of these delicious award-winning wines is $110, so you are getting a 13% saving (good Black Friday number). To order, visit the tasting room, or contact Jessica at firstname.lastname@example.org or (707) 433-1982 x101.
The best part about shopping along the Wine Road is you get to go wine tasting and shopping at the same time. In my last blog, I listed several upcoming open house events, and there are even more that I’ve learned about since posting that blog. The best way to spend Black Friday and Shop Small Business Saturday is to go wine tasting and holiday gift shopping along the Wine Road.